About Me

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I am the Pastor/Teacher of Rivers of Joy Baptist Church in Minford, Ohio since August 2008.  I am married to Charity since June 14, 1969.  I have four grown children.   Having served in the local church for over forty years as Pastor/Teacher, Asso., Youth Pastor, Minister of Education, Building Upkeep, Camp Director, Sunday School Teacher, etc. Also I have worked in the public place for as many years as I have preached. Charity and her sister are co owner of Union Mills Conf. (Bakery) in West Portsmouth Ohio

MacArthur: The tension between Calvinism and the Gospel

MacArthur: The tension between Calvinism and the Gospel
well speaking of
and the perfect transition
of and and that
related to last night in your discussions about the atonement and the
question is if that’s true then why witness how do we tell people
God loves them and that Jesus Christ did not die for them or do we tell them that
well you tell them whatever the Bible tells you to tell them and the Bible
tells you to go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature and
that’s what you do because that’s what the scripture says any tension you have
between that and the nature of the atonement any tension you have between
that and the doctor and the divine election and predestination any tension
you feel in those areas
I feel I feel the same tension I asked the same question
I don’t know I don’t know that there’s some kind of quick answer to the
question I i am however happy to concede that God can resolve things that I can’t
I like grilled I I don’t expect of you and you shouldn’t expect me to be to be
able to unscrew the unscrew double you you really don’t think that I’m going to
solve all the vast theological dilemmas that have existed since the scriptures
were in actually some people do
yes that’s the best answer to this question is my brother I feel your pain
that is the best answer to that question I I’m not here to give you an answer but
I will tell you this i do not believe that Jesus died for nobody
I believe he died for somebody and I believe he died specifically for those
who would believe in him and those who believe in him are those who are
regenerated by the Holy Spirit based upon the eternal sovereign collecting
purpose of God i think is Tom it was an actual one not a potential one
I don’t think it was a general one I think it was a specific one I think was
a real death force in the issue here is the nature of the atonement forget the
dilemma you’re going to have the dilemma no matter what you do
the dilemma is why didn’t he send everybody to heaven that dilemma is why
is there hell
and why are people going there that if that is a legitimately difficult
question to ask the only answer I can give you is that if God purpose to do
that Romans 9 who are we to question his purpose if he gets glory from judgment
the way he gets glory from from salvation who are we to question it
the other issue is nobody goes to hell for any other reason than that they’re
guilty of sin and unbelief how that fits i don’t know but there are a lot of
things I don’t know
I’ve said this so many times I don’t even know how my own spiritual life
I don’t look Paul says in Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ nevertheless
I live yet not i he didn’t know either
I didn’t know
so you know if you have I see the question who lives your spirit who lives
your Christian life who lives your spiritual life who’s in charge of your
spiritual life
well some of some of us are gonna rise and say well it’s the Holy Spirit
I don’t really think you want to blame him and if it’s all the Holy Spirit what
are all the commands in the Bible about
and yet when when you when you know you you must obey and and and the spirit
must work in it it’s it’s the mystery of how that comes together it’s the same
issue in between the security to believe are held in the Father’s hand and the
necessity of perseverance of faith a persevering faith it’s the same issue is
that we have in the in the volitional aspects of salvation and the sovereign
aspects there there’s that there’s there’s a sort of a resolution
resolution in the in the center of that is known only in the mind of God but i
will not resolve the problem of the lost any other way than to do with the
scripture tells me to do and that is that the Bible of firms to me that God
loves the world the specific people in the world the specific human beings i
don’t know who they are
spurgeon said if you pull up their shirts and show me any stamped on the
back and I know the elect I’ll i limit my work to them but since there is no
such stamp i am committed to obey the command to preach the gospel to every
creature and I can say to them that the love of God has been expressed through
Jesus Christ death on the cross and you will know and experience that love if
you put your faith in Him
and if you don’t do that you’ll perish in your sins and Jesus said you will
perish in your sins because you believe not on me
I’m very comfortable to just take the biblical aspect but I don’t think it’s a
good solution to diminish the nature of the atonement and have Jesus dying for
if you say that he paid in full the penalty for all the sins of all the
world than what is anybody doing in hell
that’s double jeopardy that doesn’t work so people don’t want to say that so they
say well he died a potentially saving death in that sense he died for nobody
in particular and everybody in general and the sinner who is depraved is the
one who activates the potential atonement while that that’s impossible
so I I just don’t want to find the answer to the dilemma of of the death of
Christ by diminishing the nature of the atonement
it is a real death for those who died in him
that’s what the text says I lay down my life for my sheep and we looked at so
and it’s a good it’s a good question answer because you guys want to be very
careful in the tensions that are in this and it flows through every major
doctrine in scripture that connects the center with God
you don’t want to resolve that tension by asking philosophical questions you
always want to live in that tension by being obedient to Scripture
ok but i do feel your pain because I don’t have an answer to all those
questions and I’m i’m at times profoundly exercised over the the the
non resolution because i like to find the the resolution two things but the
issue on why witness you you wouldn’t suggest bringing up the the discussion
of the limitations of the atonement in in a witnessing context I think we have
to be careful what we say I think there are there are unlimited benefits tied
into the atonement
you can show in in the New Testament that you know it
the expression of God’s love in the atonement is the expression of the same
love that’s demonstrated in common grace
he reigns on the
you know it rains on the just and the unjust there’s there’s common grace
there’s a there’s a kindness of god there’s a even a salvation of God
demonstrated a temporal way he’s the savior of all men temporally physically
in this sense that the world is full of sinners who aren’t dead
what is that that God is saying to them
you don’t get what you deserve when you deserve it that’s my nature so that
demonstration is there for them to see temporally but especially of those who
believe he is the savior of them not temporally and not physically but
eternally and spiritually but he puts his saving nature on display even in the
gospel offer and in common grace and in the withholding of judgment and so I
think we can say to sinners that God is merciful and God is compassionate and
God calls you to repent and caused you to believe and he’s offered his son as a
sacrifice for those who do and I that’s the way i would say it